The Fight for the Yazoo, August 1862–July 1864

Swamps, Forts and Fleets on Vicksburg’s Northern Flank


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About the Book

Following the loss of the CSS Arkansas in early August 1862, Union and Confederate eyes turned to the Yazoo River, which formed the developing northern flank for the South’s fortress at Vicksburg, Mississippi. For much of the next year, Federal efforts to capture the citadel focused on possession of that stream. Huge battles and mighty expeditions were launched (Chickasaw Bayou, Yazoo Pass, Steele’s Bayou) from that direction, but the city, guarded by stout defenses, swamps, and motivated defenders, could not be turned. Finally, Union troops ran down the Mississippi and came up from the south and the river defenses and the bastion itself were taken from the east. From July 1863 to August 1864, sporadic Confederate resistance necessitated continued Federal attention. This book recounts the whole story.

About the Author(s)

Prolific author Myron J. Smith, Jr., is emeritus library director and professor at Tusculum University, Greeneville, Tennessee.

Bibliographic Details

Myron J. Smith, Jr.
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 460
Bibliographic Info: 115 photos, 14 maps, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2012
pISBN: 978-0-7864-6281-0
eISBN: 978-0-7864-9110-0
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Introduction and Acknowledgments      1

1. The Arkansas Is Sunk and Port Hudson Is Armed      5
2. The Yazoo Country      20
3. The Initial Federal Visits and New Defenses      40
4. Yazoo Reconnaissance, October–December 1862      65
5. Chickasaw Bayou, December 1862      98
6. From the Post of Arkansas to the Yazoo Pass, January 3–February 13, 1863      127
7. Yazoo Pass Expedition, February 14–April 8, 1863      163
8. Steele’s Bayou      238
9. April–July, 1863      287
10. Incidents and Diversions, August 1863–August 1864      356

Notes      385
Bibliography      419
Index      435

Book Reviews & Awards

  • “Extremely well researched…highly recommended…definitive”—Civil War News
  • “Offers much to its readers. It provides a sweeping depiction of the military maneuvers that took place in the region north of Vicksburg…readers are bound to gain a greater understanding of this aspect of Civil War history”—Civil War Book Review
  • “If it sailed on the brown water of America’s Western rives during the Civil War and flew the Stars and Stripes of the Union Navy, Myron Smith more than likely knows about it”—America’s Civil War
  • “In addition to documenting an astounding array of ship-to-ship and ship-to-shore engagements, the vast trove of source material uncovered also allows readers access to a vast amount of information about the officers and men serving aboard these vessels…essential”—Civil War Books and Authors
  • “Thoroughly researched…well illustrated…very valuable”—Nautical Research Journal.